Rugby Open 2023 

An exhibition of contemporary art 

25 November - 3 February 2024

Rugby Open brings together a diverse range of high-quality contemporary art from emerging and established artists from the local area and includes dozens of pieces from across the arts, from paintings and prints to textiles and ceramics.

Artists from Warwickshire, Leicestershire, Northamptonshire and Coventry were invited to submit pieces for the exhibition, with a panel of judges selecting works to go on display.

This year 240 art works were selected by the judging panel from over 500 artworks submitted by local artists.  Many of the works are for sale.


The Winners

Congratulations to all the artists exhibiting in the show.  The following artists were awarded prizes by the panel of judges. 

Rugby Open 2023 Winner

Julie Krajicek – ‘Found Family’ Series (2 pictures in the Show Found Family: The Pink Slippers and Found Family: The Welcome)
Mayor’s Award:                
Joanna Bryan – Balance 1
The Arts Society Trophy:
Jacqueline Terrett – I am Leviathan
Anna Lorimer Framing Award:    
Mark Curtis Hughes – 12% pantomime
Mcready Theatre:           
Judy Haslam-Jones – The ‘Journey’ Series
Coombe Abbey:                
Bridget Aldridge – Ceramics ‘Sunburst’, ‘Turmoil’ and ‘Moody Duet’
New Leaf Catering: Draycote Water:        
Amy Bonsor - Murmuration
Art at the Alex 2D award:              
Val Hunt – Coronation Invitation Necklace 
Art at the Alex 3D award:              
Leah Stuart – St Marks Basilica, Venice
Warwickshire Open Studios EMERGE award:
Jacob Walden – Myself and Crow #5

Rugby Open 2023 Youth Winner                     

Hope Bland – My Friend The Enemy
Highly Commended:      
Jacob Walden – Myself and Crow #5
Highly Commended:      
Heather Farquharson – The Greener Grass
Highly Commended:      
Emilie Farndon – Growing Old Disgracefully
 Julie Krajicek Rugby Open 2023 

People's Choice Vote

The People's Choice Award 2024  
Sparrows by VeSA

Visitors said "This is captivating - beautifully drawn, such movement in the pencil work - I could look at it for hours // very sensitive drawing// it's beautiful // beautiful // I love the dynamic, the charge and togetherness of the flock //  You can hear it! Used to live in a place with a very old massive tree. Every morning the sparrows were chatting inside the tree branches. It reminds me of that. // Beautiful composition, detail of birds and wonderful pencilwork// Displays the essence of their little but sparkling lives// This artwork truly makes me feel like I'm home// How do you choose?!// Wonderful drawing//"

The 2023 judges

Penny Johnson 
Former Director of the Government Art Collection, Penny is now a Trustee of the Bridget Riley Foundation. The Bridget Riley Art Foundation was established in 2011 for the advancement of education in the arts, in particular in abstract art as articulated by the works of Bridget Riley. The Foundation is a registered charity and supports training, education, publications and exhibitions

Chris Orr RA
An English artist and printmaker who has published over 400 limited edition prints in lithography, etching and silkscreen.
Chris Orr is a narrative artist whose work ranges across a variety of subjects and ideas. He has a fascination with the physical and social nature of the modern city. His work is packed with observed detail and incidents. He engages with contemporary life and a sense of how the past has shaped us.  He has been described as a social surrealist. Chris started making prints in his twenties, and discovered the power of the multiple to communicate. A medium like etching consolidated his drawing. Lithography was a process that offered wonderful new freedoms. Recently, silkscreen and engraving have begun to play a big part. Printmaking is a way of taking his thoughts into a published public domain. The relationship between printmaking and books is very strong. The print is like a page and in much of his printed output there is a hidden text. He invites people to 'read' his work as well as to look at it.

Ella Humphries
People's Choice Youth Award winner 2022

Maggie O'Rourke
Mayor of Rugby Borough Council

Notes for exhibiting artists

Collection of unsold entries at close of exhibition: Monday 5 February 2024, 10.30am – 7pm.  

Please read the Terms and Conditions for further details.